The Hiking Society…The Story So Far

the hiking society

These past 12 months have been absolutely incredible.

It was during July 2016 that I decided to start The Hiking Society blog off the back of almost 2 years of heavy hiking.

This also included a trek across New Zealand at the end of 2015 walking from Hobbiton (Matamata) to Mount Doom (Tongariro National Park).

This wasn’t the reason why I started the blog.

I wanted to blog about my thoughts on tracks, gear, food and the industry in general.

And, if possible, inspire others to get into the outdoors and experience what I, and countless others, get to experience several times a month.

I’m also a big believer that there are plenty of people who want to go hiking but don’t know where to go or have no one to go with.

mount juliet

Firstly, this is why I will only ever blog about hikes I have done thus giving you, the reader, an insight into what to expect.

Furthermore, I wanted to bring attention to some tracks that weren’t as well-known as the Werribee Gorges or the Mount Macedons of the world.

Secondly, I thought the best way of actually doing this was to a) start a MeetUp group and b) blog about each hike I do.

And all of it would be powered by the other love in my life – social media.

The Facebook page and the Instagram page have been integral in drawing attention to not only the blog but also the MeetUp group.

the hiking society

Through this group, which started in September 2016, I have met some absolutely amazing people that I can now call friends.

I have seen people start off with shorter hikes and are now tackling longer and harder hikes which are purely a result of regularly hiking.

Our group has ventured out to places such as the Grampians, Wilsons Prom, Lorne, Marysville, Mitchell River, Mount Buffalo, and much more.

There’s even an interstate hike to Tasmania in the mix for early next year.

Our group now stands at 3200 people which also has roughly 25 organisers, including myself, leading hikes almost every weekend.

the hiking society

I’ve also dipped my toe into the business world and now own an online store called Globewalker which stocks hiking, camping, and mountaineering gear.

In the 12 months that it has existed, The Hiking Society has exceeded my expectations beyond belief.

I never thought the website would attract regular traffic and I certainly never thought the MeetUp group would be as big as it is right now.

The only reason that any of this is possible is down to one factor – you.

The Hiking Society is in every sense of the word a community of like-minded people coming together over a common interest.

Despite the fact that I write the content on this website – I’m always looking for contributors though – I’m always interested in what you guys have to say.

the hiking society

Something you say might challenge my way of thinking with hiking and offer a completely new perspective on it all.

And for that, I am truly grateful.

Thank you to each and every one of you who has commented on my blog posts has liked, commented, or shared my social media posts, and has attended any of the hikes that our MeetUp group has put on.

I truly am grateful for your attention and willingness to get involved in not only hiking with me or any of my leaders but also taking the time to engage with my content.

It means the absolute world to me.


4 Responses
    1. John Feeney

      Hi Sally,

      Thanks for reaching out. While our MeetUp group primarily does day hikes, we do plenty of overnight hikes as well. It can be a little tricky to do more than that due to good old reality haha.

      Thanks again.

  1. Sam Green

    What a rip off. You started this group to rip off the guys idea from Trail Hiking Australia. You steal his concept, steal his materiel, even steal his admin docs to start your own meetup group. Then you expand into NSA, just as he has done. You are a player John Feeney and someone who cannot be trusted. I guess imitation is supposed to be the best form of flattery so good luck living in someone else’s shadow you moron.

    1. John Feeney

      Hi Sam,

      Thanks for the feedback. I really appreciate it. Last I checked MeetUps, hiking trails in Victoria, and information regarding those two are free of charge and are not owned by anyone. Ergo everyone has the right to do them. It’s not IP, mate.

      My blog, and MeetUp group, is one of hundreds in the outdoor space and to suggest that THA is the only one that should have ownership over everything is, at the very least, ridiculous.

      Last I checked, I don’t have a forum. I don’t have a monthly eMag to download from my forum and I have never started a KickStarter for an app for my website. I also don’t have banner ads.

      I’m not sure whether Darren has put you up to this or not, and it’s irrelevant either way, but next time please have a good think about what you are saying before you go off half cocked at someone you don’t know about something that you’ve clearly been given second hand info about.

      I’ll be at Mount Macedon tomorrow morning to take a group out for a hike. Feel free to come along for a chat.

      Thanks again.


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